Out and About: Date Night at American Gymkhana Restaurant in Orlando

American Gymkhana in Orlando

My husband and I were recently invited to American Gymkhana for dinner, and we were eager to try this new restaurant out. We discovered this is an upscale place, perfect for a date night. Our children eat Indian food all the time, but I would think twice before taking them here, as the atmosphere is better for adults. The faire is modern Indian from the colonial India era. For this evening, my husband, Kirk, and I went as a date – no kids. Yay us!

American Gymkhana in Orlando - Tandoori Portobello, Broccoli, Onions skewer and Malpe Shrimp
American Gymkhana in Orlando – Malpe Shrimp and Tandoori Portobello, Broccoli, Onions skewer

We ordered two appetizers: the Tandoori Portobello, Broccoli & Onion skewer, and the Malpe Shrimp (seasoned with fennel butter-pepper and garlic-cilantro-curry leaf pesto). Both were very good. The skewer was more spicy than I normally order (yes, I’m a wimp), but my hubby thought it was great.

American Gymkhana in Orlando - Nashile Lamb Chops and Zaffroni Lobster
American Gymkhana in Orlando – Nashile Lamb Chops and Zaffroni Lobster

Next we had the Zaffroni Lobster with the Adraki Gobhi which was actually an appetizer, but I wanted it as my side dish; Nashile Lamb Chops (spiced with whiskey/ginger/black cardamom/garlic) and Daal Mahkni. We also had to have an order of garlic Naan.  We shared everything and it was all flavorful, but not overpowering. The lobster was perfectly baked in the tandoori oven then dipped in saffron butter. The taste was wonderful; delicate yet full bodied. The Gobhi (cauliflower) was nicely breaded so it was crispy on the outside, then covered in a ginger sauce. It was wonderful! I do not generally eat lamb, so I’m not a good judge, but although the chops were small, they were tender. My husband says that they were good. The Daal was good and not too spicy as I have had in other restaurants. It’s Daal, and I have not experienced a great diversity in the preparation of this dish.

American Gymkhana in Orlando - Adraki Gobhi and Gajarela Bread Pudding
American Gymkhana in Orlando – Adraki Gobhi and Gajarela Bread Pudding

For dessert Kirk had the Gajarela Bread Pudding, a carrot-flavored dessert served with green chili ice cream. I did have a small bite even though I do not like carrot cake or spicy ice cream. It was an interesting combination. Kirk liked it. I had the Royal Kulfi which was basically an ice cream with sweet basil seeds and a spiced crumble. It was very rich and creamy and took care of the heat in my mouth from earlier dishes.

They do have a sommelier to assist with wine choices, but we did not order any wine tonight. Their wine list does have a good variety, by the quick read I gave it. We instead tried their cocktails. I really enjoyed the Adraki Punch, a citrusy punch featuring fig-infused vodka, homemade honey-ginger syrup, and a mix of lemon and grapefruit juices. I felt it paired well with the dishes.

American Gymkhana in Orlando - Veranda Seating
American Gymkhana in Orlando – Veranda Seating

They have a veranda, in addition to the main room, and it is expected to open in the next couple of days. It will serve appetizers and small plates as well as drinks. It’s a much more relaxed atmosphere and the windows will be able to be opened to our cooler seasonal air.  They also have a private dining room that can seat around 30 people.

Everything we had at American Gymkhana was enjoyable and full of flavor. Each bite had its own flavor and seemed to work with the next bite of a different dish to bring out all of the tastes possible. We enjoyed our evening and were very satisfied. We would return in the future.

American Gymkhana is located at is now open at 7559 W Sand Lake Rd in Dr. Phillips, on the second floor (elevator or stairs). It is open for dinner at 5pm. For more information, including menus, visit americangymkhana.com.

[Photos by Kirk Garreans and Carol Garreans]

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